Genre: Depression & Mental Illness

The Wicker King by K. Ancrum | Review

Posted February 25, 2019 in Books, Reviews / 1 Comment
The Wicker King by K. Ancrum | Review

The Wicker King had been lingering on my TBR for a while, and when it was announced as the first read in the Dragons & Tea Book Club, it shot to the top of my TBR so I could participate. When I received my paperback copy in the mail, I actually initially though it was damaged as the pages slowly fade into the black the further along the novel progresses, which seemed an ominous sign for what I was getting into while reading. As expected from both the description on the book design, The Wicker King is a tale of […]


The Astonishing Color of After | Review

Posted May 7, 2018 in Reviews / 4 Comments
The Astonishing Color of After | Review

The Astonishing Color of After caught my eye as it’s a mix of a lot of wonderful elements that I hadn’t quite seen put altogether before: magical realism, death & grief, mental illness, and an Asian protagonist. Excited by the synopsis and by the prospect of a setting in Thailand, I dove into the novel curious to see how all of the elements meshed together. What I encountered was a beautifully written story with vivid settings and prose that was literary without being too weighed down or pompous. A longer contemporary (clocking in at almost 500 pages), there are quite […]


Aftercare Instructions by Bonnie Pipkin | Review

Posted January 29, 2018 in Reviews / 10 Comments
Aftercare Instructions by Bonnie Pipkin | Review

Aftercare Instructions is the book we need in YA. It’s an honest, vulnerable, frank, and succinct story about family, relationships, and yes, abortion. But it’s not an issue book about abortion. It’s a book about the aftermath, or aftercare, about the thousands of decisions that happen in a family, in a friendship, in a relationship that lead to a single moment or pivotal point. It’s about a person being made of so much more than one action that defines them. It’s a true coming of age novel that’s somehow extremely quick yet tells an extremely in depth story. The story […]


When We Collided by Emery Lord | ARC Review

Posted April 4, 2016 in Reviews / 20 Comments
When We Collided by Emery Lord | ARC Review

I found myself lucky enough to acquire a copy of When We Collided last summer at ALA, when I chatted with a lovely Bloomsbury representative who recommended it when I told her I was interested in heavier contemporaries. I had of course heard Emery Lord’s name due to the success of her first two YA novels, but I hadn’t had a chance to read her work yet. I decided I wanted to go in blind and have my ARC of When We Collided be my first experience with Lord’s work, so I wouldn’t have any preconceived notions or expectations about […]


Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton | In Which I Trust NO ONE

Posted February 22, 2016 in Reviews / 5 Comments
Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton | In Which I Trust NO ONE

“The Sugar Plum Fairy has the farthest to fall.” Tiny Pretty Things had all of the makings of a book that I thought would greatly polarize me into the camp of loving it for its darkness and beauty or abhorring it for its drama and pettiness. While the novel definitely did both, I found Tiny Pretty Things to eventually win me over as a compulsively readable story that featured a form of art so often associated with beauty, delicacy, and primness and contrasted it with its harsh realities of its demands, pressures, and feats of athleticism. Charaipotra and Clayton built […]


None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio | Review

Posted February 17, 2016 in Reviews / 8 Comments
None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio | Review

“The biggest difference between boy and girls is how people treat them” None of the Above is one of those books that I had on my radar constantly in 2015, but never got around to reading for some inexplicable reason. When I saw that my close friend Lauren from Bookmarklit was reading it this month, I figured it was the perfect time to move it to the top of my TBR. I found it to be an incredibly fast and easy read to finish while in my wisdom teeth recovery, which focused on the issue of intersex with what seemed […]


The Masked Truth by Kelley Armstrong | A Psychological Thriller Worth the Anxiety

Posted February 8, 2016 in ARCs, Reviews / 5 Comments
The Masked Truth by Kelley Armstrong | A Psychological Thriller Worth the Anxiety

In the YA genre, it’s rare that you get a thriller that’s grueling and graphic, one that makes you wince as you turn the page because you’re not quite sure what you’re going to encounter and how it’s going to affect you. Yet that’s exactly what The Masked Truth by Kelley Armstrong offers. It’s a story that isn’t bound by genre in it’s realistic portrayal of the realities of a hostage situation, and doesn’t sugar coat the fate of most of its characters. While I times it may be an intense read, I am always one to appreciate when a […]


Celebrating One Year of Book Buddies: A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis (& Giveaway!)

Posted October 29, 2015 in Book Buddies Reviews, Reviews / 10 Comments
Celebrating One Year of Book Buddies: A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis (& Giveaway!)

Cristina, Kaitlin, and Lauren Read: Book Buddies is a discussion style review I participate in every other month with my friend Lauren who runs the blog Bookmarklit. This month marks the one year anniversary of book buddies, and to celebrate Lauren had the fantastic idea of doing a group Book Buddies read with Kaitlin from Next Page Please!, who serves as her other book buddy. In keeping with the spirit of Halloween we chose a book that we had all been curious about that seemed appropriately eerie. You can find the last part of the chat below, but be sure […]


When Tragedy Becomes Incredibly Important: Violent Ends by Shaun David Hutchinson | ARC Review

Posted September 14, 2015 in Five Star Reads, Reviews / 4 Comments
When Tragedy Becomes Incredibly Important: Violent Ends by Shaun David Hutchinson | ARC Review

My Review When I was at ALA this summer, I was pitched this book by an editor at Simon & Schuster when I asked specifically for heavier contemporary recommendations. The editor had worked on the collection himself and was SO excited about it, and it’s one of those instances in which I’m seriously glad that I asked for recommendations because it may not have been a title I would have picked up myself. I’m so glad that I spoke with that editor at ALA because this book is so intense and so bold in what it does: it doesn’t essentialize […]


Made You Up by Francesca Zappia | Review

Posted July 22, 2015 in Reviews / 6 Comments
Made You Up by Francesca Zappia | Review

“There is no force in high school more powerful than one person’s blunt disagreement.” Made You Up was one of my most highly anticipated reads of the year. I envied those who won ARCs of it at YALLWEST, and read many, many reviews raving about the story. However, I found that this novel was another victim of hype. While Alex’s story and disease captivated me, the plot, setting and circumstances were often so absurd and caricaturized that I found it hard to follow along. It’s no spoiler to mention that Alex has schizophrenia; it’s one of the major plot points […]